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Low-Carb Double Chocolate Fudge Protein Bars

These Low-Carb Double Chocolate Fudge Protein Bars are absolutely DELICIOUS – and they’re made with Isomalt-Oligosaccharide (IMO) Syrup!

You might be asking yourself, “What’s IMO? and what’s so special about it?” Well, IMO binds all ingredients together and retains moisture like nothing else does! It also changes composition dramatically when it’s heated as opposed to when it drops below room temperate. It’s a fascinating ingredient, it really is. We’ve tackled a few questions about IMO at the bottom of this post.

Right now though, let’s give you a recipe for these brownies: 



2 teaspoons (IMO) syrup 
1 teaspoons sugar-free pancake syrup
1 scoop chocolate whey protein powder
1 teaspoon cocoa powder


1. First, heat up the liquid IMO in a pot until bubbles start to form. Once this happens, add the syrup and mix it.

2. Then, add the whey and cocoa until you get a sort of sticky dough. Remove the whole thing from the heat and mould it with your hands into a bar.

3. Press this bar onto a silicone brownie tray and stick it in the fridge for an hour so it sets. Done.

Now, here’s a Q&A so we can deal with some questions you may have about IMO:

Q & A

1. Q:  where can I – a regular human – get IMO from? A: Online! Just do a search!

2. Q: Could you tell me more about isomalto-oligosaccharides, or IMO? A: Ah, yes. IMO is a prebiotic fibre used as a food ingredient that is completely devoid of vitamins, minerals, fats, and proteins. It’s basically comprised of ‘digestion resistant carbs‘ i.e. carbs that ‘go right through you!.’ IMO can be found – in very small quantities – in honey, miso, sake and soy sauce. IMO has a caloric value of 2.4kcals per gram. Flavour wise, IMO has a relative sweetness level that’s 60% that of sucrose.

3. Q: But what IS it? A: It is a “mixture of glucose oligomers with alpha (1-6) linkages” ( Precisely, “Isomalto-oligosaccharide is composed of 15-20% of smaller saccharides and 70-80% of the larger oligosaccharides. Thus, IMO contains both digestible and non-digestible saccharides. The fractions composed of isomaltose, maltose, and panose would be digested in the small intestine and absorbed as glucose following oral administration. The non-digested oligosaccharides would pass through the small intestine and undergo microbial fermentation in the large intestine. The non-digested oligosaccharides would consist of the larger oligosaccharides” (ibid).

4. Q: Is IMO good for me? Or… what’s the deal? A: There have been a few studies conducted that have looked at the potential health benefits of IMO. Most of them have concluded that, as a prebiotic, their effect is far from harmful; that, in fact, IMO can be beneficial to one’s digestion. Wikipedia links a pretty solid list of studies about IMO worth checking out if you’re interested (click here to see it)


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8 Replies to “Low-Carb Double Chocolate Fudge Protein Bars”

  1. Doesn’t heating up whey denature the protein and render it less effective?

    Is there a no-heat way of making something similar?

  2. I have a box of Quest mixed on the way and also some isomalt on the way… Anna im in Oz – Is Isomalt just Isomalt? Meaning I cant get the VitaFiber is standard Isomalt from cake decorating store ok?

  3. I love your recipes Anna and this is another that I’ll be definitely be trying out.

    I’m not sure if you do requests, but I would love to see your take on the Horleys Carb Less Crunch (I’m not sure if you have it your country for sale). Its basically a high protein, sugar free, vegetarian rice crispy bar made from soy and peanuts (although I wouldn’t have a clue where you would get soy crisps from – could you make a version from brown rice flakes instead?).

  4. i love quest bars but they’re not very cheap, this is looks like a great recipe wonder if agar agar and pysillum husk would work instead of vitafiber 🙂